Tip calls coming in regarding suspect involved in two violent incidents in Utica involving women


UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - On Friday, Utica Police released surveillance video of a man they say is wanted for two separate violent incidents involving women.

On Monday, Utica Police Public Information Officer Sgt. Steve Hauck told NEWSChannel 2 that several tip calls have come in since the video was released to the media on Friday, but unfortunately the tip callers have identified the man as several different people. So far, no arrests have been made.

"We've gotten several different names, so we've got to do some of the leg work of who the suspect really is, but it's been great, we've been getting calls," Sgt. Hauck said.

The first incident took place back on December 22 at the Price Chopper parking lot on Genesee Street in South Utica at 7:30 in the morning.

Police say a woman was sitting in her car in the driver's seat, when the suspect forced his way into the vehicle on that driver's side, then held the woman at knife point while he drove away with her inside.

After leaving her and the car behind on a nearby side street, police say the suspect ended up using her ATM card that he took, at a Fast Tarc convenience store several blocks away on Oneida Street at the Parkway.

That is right near where the second incident happened, eight days later, as police believe the same man attacked a female employee of the Save-a-Lot grocery on Oneida St. with a knife.

Sgt. Hauck says that employee suffered stab wounds to her hands.

"She required stitches," Hauck said. "She was fairly injured, but she's doing ok, but I'm sure she's shaken up, like anybody would."

In that incident police say the suspect attacked the worker for no apparent reason, so there's no telling what he's capable of, or might do next.

Police say the employee was doing inventory in the store with several other employees before the store opened, but the doors to the store were unlocked because workers were going in and out of the building.

They say the suspect entered the store, the female worker told him the store was closed, so he started to leave, but didn't, came back, and attacked her with a knife.

Sgt. Hauck says the department thought it was important to get the surveillance video out to the public.

"I thought it was important for people to realize what this person is capable of and it's not just the run of the mill larceny case, and I wanted people to realize this is a dangerous person and these are the types of the people we need to get off the streets as soon as we can."

These type of incidents do make people more aware of their surroundings.

"It kind of reminds you that there are bad people out there, and you're doing the mundane things that we do everyday, you get gas in your car and leave the car running, you go in and pay and your car is gone, all of those little things that you don't think anything of, there are people out there who pay attention to it, and are looking to prey on people."

If anyone knows the whereabouts of this suspect or has any information on either incident, they are asked to call Utica Police at (315) 223-3510.

What's On